Nathan leaves tomorrow and we won’t see him for a couple of weeks. Even though he travels a lot, it seems I still cycle through the same feelings every time. This weekend as we prepared to send him off, I’m already experiencing all of these feelings on the emotional roller coaster.
Quick, get him to put away the boxes that go up high! And do the download I don’t understand how to do on the computer. What else am I forgetting? Do the kids even know he’s leaving? Did we tell them? Oh crud, they are definitely going to need therapy. It’s just a lot of panic that sets in.
I feel so incredibly grateful to have a husband that leaves a gaping hole when he isn’t here. Because he prays at bedtime, checks the math homework, unloads the dishwasher, catches for the pitcher, and answers the hard questions. I think how sad it would be if we didn’t feel that empty spot when he was gone.
Some moments I feel straight up mad that I’ll be at a band concert and my daughter won’t have a parent there when she takes the mound, catches a foul ball or strikes out at bat and tears up. I know people will be there to cheer her on and I know this is life. But I am just telling you that sometimes I am mad, if only for a moment.
Yesterday we spent a lot of time together as a family. Some of it was fun, but most of it was helping each other with various projects. The moments are so much sweeter when I know how much we need to store them away and savor them for a few weeks. Yesterday we felt and really soaked in the joy of being a complete family.
I try hard to keep the moments of sadness tucked away until he leaves so I don’t make his departure more difficult. I try hard to put on my brave face. But sometimes at night when we have him all packed up for the next morning and we crawl into bed and turn out the lights, the tears start to quietly flow. Listening to his goodbyes with the kids is probably the hardest part for me.
Because some of you do this single parent thing all the time. Some of you don’t have a husband at all, or live without him as a part of your household for way more time than I do. So then I feel guilty that I am even feeling any of this at all. Like I’m not allowed to feel feelings that other people have to deal with more than me.
Like the weight of it all is falling on me. And God thinks I can do this. And Nathan is counting on me. And my kids are counting on me. So I pull it together and don’t let any one negative emotion pull too hard or stay with me too long.
This looming sense that something is coming that I don’t want. I don’t talk about it and I try to block it out to enjoy the moments that are happening rather than anticipate what’s coming. But sometimes it’s just dread.
By my husband and my children who are so crazy-sweet to me in these times. My precious prayer warriors that carry us through. My friends that just flat out figure out whatever weird things are needed to take care of me. The grandparents that come to the things that they know Nathan will miss. I am so loved, and my heavenly father uses so many people to remind me of his love in the most unique ways.